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What is Full Retirement Age (FRA) for Social Security and wich is my benefit by year of birth in 2024?

Full retirement age (FRA) is the age at which an individual may first be entitled to full or unreduced retirement benefits. This age changes depending on the year of birth.

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Navigating the intricacies of Social Security can be complex, but understanding the Full Retirement Age (FRA) and the benefits associated with it is crucial for planning a secure retirement. As of 2024, the landscape of Social Security benefits continues to evolve, reflecting changes in legislation and demographic shifts.

What is Full Retirement Age (FRA)?

The Full Retirement Age is the age at which a person may first become entitled to full or unreduced retirement benefits. This age varies depending on the year of birth. For those reaching the age of 62 in 2024, the FRA is 67 years old.

Benefits by year of birth

The Social Security Administration determines your benefits based on your year of birth. For individuals born in 1960 or later, the full retirement age is 67. Those born before 1960 have a slightly lower FRA, which is determined by a specific schedule.

Below is a list of full retirement and age 62 benefits by year of birth in 2024:

  • If born in 1943-1954, full retirement age is 66, and age 62 benefit is 75% of full retirement benefit
  • If born in 1955, full retirement age is 66 and 2 months, and age 62 benefit is 73.3% of full retirement benefit
  • If born in 1956, full retirement age is 66 and 4 months, and age 62 benefit is 71.7% of full retirement benefit
  • If born in 1957, full retirement age is 66 and 6 months, and age 62 benefit is 70% of full retirement benefit
  • If born in 1958, full retirement age is 66 and 8 months, and age 62 benefit is 68.3% of full retirement benefit
  • If born in 1959, full retirement age is 67, and age 62 benefit is 65% of full retirement benefit
  • If born in 1960 or later, full retirement age is 67, and age 62 benefit is 60% of full retirement benefit

Please note, of you were born on January 1, you should refer to the previous year’s December. This rule also applies to anyone born on the 1st of any month, you would need to refer to the previous month. Also, the max benefit for your spouse is 50% of the benefits the worker receives at Full Retirement Age and you must be 62 for the entire month before you begin claiming benefits.

Early retirement and benefit reduction

Choosing to retire before reaching the FRA will result in a reduction of benefits. For example, starting your retirement benefits at age 62 will reduce your monthly benefit amount by approximately 30% for those born in 1960 or later. This reduction is permanent and reflects the longer period over which you’ll be receiving benefits.

Delayed retirement and benefit increase

Conversely, delaying retirement past your FRA can increase your benefits. Delayed retirement credits are accrued, resulting in a higher monthly benefit when you do start receiving Social Security. The increase can be significant, with the potential for benefits to grow until you reach the age of 70.

Working while receiving benefits

If you choose to work while receiving Social Security benefits before reaching your FRA, your benefits may be reduced if your earnings exceed certain limits. In 2024, the earnings limit is $22,320 for those under the FRA for the entire year. The SSA deducts $1 from your benefits for every $2 earned above this limit.

Maximizing your Social Security Benefits

To maximize your Social Security benefits, it’s essential to consider the timing of your retirement carefully. Factors such as your health, financial needs, and employment opportunities should play a role in this decision. Utilizing tools like the Social Security Calculator can help estimate your benefits based on various retirement ages and income levels.

The impact of your Full Retirement Age on your Social Security Benefits

The Full Retirement Age is a pivotal factor in determining your Social Security benefits. Whether you choose early retirement, on-time retirement, or delayed retirement, each option carries its own set of advantages and disadvantages. By understanding the implications of your year of birth on your FRA and benefits, you can make informed decisions that align with your retirement goals.

In summary, the FRA for those turning 62 in 2024 is 67 years old. Benefits are reduced for early retirement and increased for delayed retirement. Working while receiving benefits before FRA may affect the benefit amount, and careful planning is necessary to maximize Social Security benefits.

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